September 30, 2020
Dear Wildcat Family,
Thank you for your cooperation and encouragement these past several weeks as we started the 2020-2021 school year in an atypical manner and under challenging circumstances. We all agree that school was meant to be a community built upon relationships, and that learning occurs best in an environment with rich and meaningful interactions. Your support of our school and your students during remote e-learning has been invaluable and a prime example of the Wildcat spirit!
As districts in the area are reassessing their learning plans and as we head into October, I wanted to provide you with an update on the status of our remote e-learning model. We will continue to use the remote e-learning model through October 30th as we originally communicated. However, we are monitoring our community situation and are currently working on developing plans for some type of model to effectively bring back students if and when circumstances make in-person attendance manageable and sustainable while still retaining the e-learning option. Should this be the case, the early part of November would be the earliest tentative start date for some type of in-person opportunity. If circumstances and procedures are not conducive to an in-person learning model, we will need to continue with remote e-learning through November and quite possibly through December as well.
As you are aware, the decision for student learning and how students are brought back in this COVID environment involves several factors. In addition to academics, we need to carefully consider procedural and protocol requirements from the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) and from health agencies such as the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH), the DuPage County Health Department (DCHD) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). We need to also take into account the impact that the current COVID situation and the learning models of other districts have on our faculty and staff. Lastly, we need to make every effort to maintain consistency and establish sustainability for everyone involved. Switching back and forth from one learning model to another every few weeks is detrimental to students and their learning, and places a great deal of strain on family support structures such as childcare and work schedules.
For the past 6 months, we have been in regular communication with the DuPage County Health Department (DCHD) and the DuPage Regional Office of Education twice a week, each week. The purposes of these meetings have been to monitor the status of COVID in our communities and to be apprised of changes and/or additions to the required procedures and protocols from ISBE, IDPH, DCHD, and the CDC. We will continue to be in regular communication with the DCHD and the DuPage Regional Office of Education so that we are able to respond to changes that come from the county, state, or federal levels and make the appropriate adjustments. Our goal is to communicate to you our next steps with our learning model by mid-October.
It goes without saying that we are all eager to bring students back to school and return to the normal routines that we have known and valued. The halls and classrooms are not the same without the sounds of laughter, discussion, cheers, and debates. Until then, we will continue to Learn, Live, and Lead as best as we can in our current environment so that this less than ideal situation we are all in becomes a clear illustration of Wildcat Pride!
Moses Cheng, Ed.D., Superintendent